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Colour-screen Kindle on the cards, Amazon acquisition hints

Amazon has bought Liquavista, a company that makes 'electrowetting' colour displays.

A Kindle ebook reader with a colour screen could become reality in the near future, as Amazon has snapped up a company that manufactures multicolour displays.

Liquavista used to be owned by Samsung, but has been bought by Amazon. In a statement sent to our sister site CNET News, the online book magnate said, "We're always looking for new technologies we may be able to incorporate into our products over the long term."

Liquavista makes 'electrowetting' displays, which apply a charge to coloured oils inside a screen to display images. You can see a Samsung concept electrowetting display in action in the video embedded below.

That's not the same as the E-Ink displays used in current Kindle devices, which apply a charge to electrically charged pigment. E-Ink, the company behind that display tech, already makes a colour panel, dubbed Triton.

E-Ink is preferable to normal LCD or OLED displays that occupy smart phones and tablets because of its low power consumption, and because it's not backlit, making it easy to read in direct sunlight.

Amazon is locked in an ebook reader race with rival firms such as Barnes & Noble and Kobo. Kobo recently revealed the Aura HD, an ebook reader with a stonking 1,440x1,080-pixel resolution, upping the stakes and battling Amazon's glowing Kindle Paperwhite.

A full-colour ebook reader from Amazon would certainly pique my interest, as it could make reading digital magazines or comics a full-colour possibility.

Do you want to see Amazon using its new acquisition to make colour gadgets, or are you perfectly happy with your monochrome ebook reader? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.